The power of commitment

“When you are interested, you do what’s convenient. When you are committed, you do whatever it takes.” 

This post is inspired by someone I met today in Colombo. When he decided to move back to Sri Lanka from the Middle East 15 years ago, his wife wasn’t too happy with the decision. She loved Dubai too much. This man promised his wife that he’ll bring her to Dubai for at least ten days every year. And he hasn’t missed a year since. He told me it was difficult at times to take the ten days off because of work pressure, or other priorities, ‘but a promise is a promise’. 

How often do we sabotage our relationships, health, productivity, talent, dreams… by not fulfilling the commitments that we make to ourselves or others. Whether big or small, every broken promise adds up to create an unhappy situation. Some of the most commonly broken promises I can think of:

  • To our loved ones: I’ll call you back in a minute. I’ll do it during the weekend. I’ll be there for the… (birthday party or the game or the parent-teacher meeting). We’ll take a vacation this year.
  • To our kids: We’ll read it tonight. Yes, I’ll help with your math. I’ll fix it tomorrow. We’ll go there during the weekend.
  • At work: I am working on it. I’ll email you today. I’ll clean up my desk. I’ll call you back. I’ll learn the new… (skill, system, program, equipment) soon.
  • To ourselves: I’ll start exercising. I’ll read that book. I’ll eat healthy. I’m off desserts. I quit coffee. I’ll wake up earlier. I’ll clean up. I’ll volunteer. I’ll start saving.

And I am as guilty as anybody else. Let’s promise to keep our promises. And commit to fulfill our commitments.

[Photo of Fauja Singh, the 100-year old runner. See the story here]

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16 thoughts on “The power of commitment

  1. wow.. that’s inspiring! Promises r so easily made and just as easily broken these days. Hehe they seem to hold barely any value! If only people thought twice before making a commitment there would def b less probs between them!

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  2. Yes good thoughts! The process of keeping our commitment or whatever else we do becomes beautiful when our interest is there too!

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  3. sumtimes its bettr 2 commit or promise 2 control the situation rather then telling a truth …. isn’t it?????v shuld b honest but as sadaf said v shuld b flexible in our approach….

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  4. Thanx for keeping me geared. this message should be with everyone all the time! unknowingly made promises do make others in our life sad.Lets us all promise never to promise if can’t keep the promise.

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